Variety Studio: Tales from the trenches

Thesps gather for the Awards Edition

Leslie Mann teared up while talking about watching her daughter, Maude Apatow, nail an emotional scene in “This Is 40.” David Chase spoke of transition to the bigscreen with “Not Fade Away.” “Parks and Recreation” co-star Adam Scott and Max Greenfield of “New Girl” built a veritable pyramid of hilarious stories.

The trio, as well as dozens of other thesps, directors and producers, gathered at the Variety Studio: Awards Edition on Wednesday and Thursday at a private residence in BevHills.

The roundtable discussions, led by Variety editors Stuart Levine and Jon Weisman, encompassed creative talent from films and TV shows that have strong buzz in the awards season race.

Acting talent ranged from youngster Quvenzhane Wallis and teens Elle Fanning and Tom Holland to vets such as John Goodman, William H. Macy and Lorraine Toussaint. Also in attendance were Kristen Stewart, Jason Clarke and Kerry Washington.

Television discussions were split by genre, with a jam-packed comedy session featuring such stars as Mindy Kaling, Martha Plimpton and Jesse Tyler Ferguson.

At the producers chat, “Breaking Bad” producer Mark Johnson said that “cable television is the most important thing to happen to movies in the past 10 years.”

The directors panel, which included John Madden and Joe Wright, was highlighted by tyro helmer Benh Zeitlin’s story about his father’s blood sugar skyrocketing at the first screening for “Beasts of the Southern Wild.”

“I almost killed my dad, my film was so bad,” he said.

Highlights from the Variety Studio sessions will unspool later this month on

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